Thursday, March 17, 2016

Don't be that jerk at work! Carrie Glenn

What everyone ought to know about what not to do in the workplace.

At work, wouldn't it be fair to say most of us want to be perceived as successful, dependable, worth promoting and even dynamic? Yes, our pedigree, diploma, and connections can get our foot in the door but what keeps us in everyone's good graces and keeps us from getting the boot?

How we behave at work can deeply affect how far ahead we get, how often we receive raises and promotions, and even the quality of the type of projects we are given. How we behave can also be construed as indicators of our character. In short, we are valued or judged on our behavior at work.

Here are 5 big NO-NO's:

1. The Houdini smile. You know that smile. It's the smile that instantly vanishes when the giver turns away. You know, the smile that tries to brighten the room but almost never quite reaches the eyes and even if by some miracle the giver does manage to authenticate that fake smile, it slips off as their head is turning away, leaving in its place a subtle, almost triumphantly obnoxious sneer of victory that they have yet again duped the receiver.

What you can do: Learn to smile genuinely and make a point to keep a smile on your face after engaging with others for at least 5-10 seconds. The way to let your smile fade naturally is to keep thinking about a positive aspect of the conversation. Think of your gently-fading smile as a "transition" from the engagement to your next task.

2. Gossip. Nearly everyone does it. It is so prevalent in today's workplace that to not gossip could get you on the least-popular-list in a jiffy. However, employees are beginning to stand up against office bullying and other harmful work environments. The need to subtly dissuade gossip has become urgent and there are ways to effectively handle this.

What you can do: Never start gossiping. When someone else gossips, find a reason to excuse yourself or simply change the subject.

Got FOMO? 
make sure you get our next blog notice

3. Being rude to others (even accidentally). This is such a broad and vague subject that it can be difficult to navigate without a second pair of eyes on you. There are a few things that can make one appear rude even if they don't mean to be.

  • Googley eye contact: lack of eye contact, wandering eyes, lack of interest in eyes, fake smiles that don't reach the eyes.
  • Shyness: being nervous to carry on a conversation, poor posture, being more quiet than others (don't worry, we do address those extraverts in moment!).
  • Lack of etiquette: not holding the door for others, not saying good morning to each person you meet, not shaking hands properly, introducing people incorrectly, not holding the elevator, not displaying the proper respect to everyone from the boss to the janitor. 

What you can do: Learn about eye contact. If you are shy, learn some techniques to help with confident communication. Take a career etiquette workshop or read a book or two. This is good even if you already have good business etiquette. Also, get honest feedback from others if you think you may display rudeness.

4. Being an office bully. There are basically two types of office bullies: the ones who know they are bullies and the ones who blame others for making them re-act in an uncivil manner. Either way, bullies engage in any or all of these behaviors: demeaning body language, talk down-to, yell, criticize, public reprimanding, sexual advances, gossip, hazing, roasting, teasing, stealing credit, oh! The list goes on!

What you can do: There is a simple 3 step plan for controlling one's tendency to engage in office bullying:

  • Learn to manage your stress and temper.
  • Get some conflict resolution skills under your belt.
  • Now stop bullying others. 

5. Talking non-stop about yourself or complaining. We all know that office assistant that we avoid. You know, the one we attempt to escape from for fear that if he catches our eye he will instantaneously launch into a five minute monologue about any given subject. Don't be that guy! Or the complaining, whining, nay-sayer that no one can please.

What you can do: Ask more questions and listen to the answers. Never speak in sentences more than 11 words long. Stop worrying about the things you can complain about and focus more on solutions. -

BONUS: Bad body language! It may surprise you to learn that bad body language can make people unlikeable. It stands to reason since non-verbal communication is a huge percentage of our communication. This can include facial expressions, unpolished or inappropriate gestures, poor posture, clenched fists, fidgeting, hands crossed in front of your chest or even held together down in front of your belly, hands on your hips, hair in your eyes, crossed feet, one foot over your knee, rushed behavior, tone of voice, insensitivity to personal space, too much swag in your walk and not enough swag in your walk.

What you can do: Join a club like Toastmasters to address other idiosyncrasies. Take international etiquette to learn how some body language (like showing the bottom of your foot) can offend others cultures. Take ballet or yoga consistently to improve posture.

Please also click the link below for a well-rounded view of this topic. A portion of my above tips, along with several other wonderful pieces of advice from other experts were featured in this FABULOUS article on

7 reasons your co-workers don't like you – and how to fix it, by Mary Lorenz

Bio: Carrie Glenn helps Millennials develop modern career etiquette so that they can become a powerful force in the workplace. She teaches workplace civility, career etiquette, volunteer and event etiquette, Mother/Daughter grace and poise, professional dining, professional image and makeup, and more. From the dining room to the boardroom, her unique training provides powerful social skills that deliver results. She is the founder of, where she teaches everything kind, classy, and beautiful and she is the author of The Periscope Checklist, the eBook that teaches professional, high quality live broadcasting skills.

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Sunday, December 13, 2015

Do you see with your eyes? by Carrie Glenn, Etiquette at Hand

Picture a small, modern coffee shop sharing space with a small indie movie theater. The smell of hot coffee is more prevalent today than the popcorn.

I am upstairs with my four year old granddaughter where it is warm and open and friendly. We talk and laugh about her school. Her friends. She tries my pasta yet it is too spicy. She tips her water and only a drop escapes the lid. 

She wears the cutest hat ever. It's a white knit beanie that reads, "Meow. Just kitten." Cute as can be. And she has a wrap around dress over tights and lace-up boots. And of course a pink knit backpack. Kid's got style, I'm telling you. 

As we were leaving, a nice young lady who works there compliments Norah's boots and Norah thanks her. Norah proudly tells me "...and I looked her in the eye when I said, 'Thank you.'"

At age four she understands that it is kind and polite, to have good manners and to look people in the eye when we talk to them. My job is done. (Ha! Well maybe!) 

Signing off,

Carrie Glenn, Etiquette Expert
Please remember to Practice Politeness!

Never miss a blog! Click below

Carrie Glenn helps Millennials develop career etiquette so that they can become a powerful force in the workplace. She teaches workplace civility, career etiquette, volunteer and event etiquette, Mother / Daughter grace and poise, professional dining, professional image and makeup, and more. From the dining room to the boardroom, her unique training provides powerful social skills that deliver results. She is the founder of, where she teaches everything kind, classy, and beautiful and she is the author of The Periscope Checklist, the eBook that teaches professional, high quality live broadcasting skills.

Not good enough and TODAY by Carrie Glenn

Featured on NBC's TODAY Shortcut??? 

No way! But yes. It's true! "Help A Reporter Out" (HARO) is an email subscription list that sends queries from reporters and article writers to your inbox. They tell you what info they need and from which experts they want it for their upcoming projects and if all match up, you submit your pearls of wisdom.


And again.

And again, and again and again.

When I emailed my submission to Aly Walansky's query for her TODAY show site's article on taking care of tights, I sort of figured, "No way. She won't select mine. It's too dumb. It's not that good, not good enough. It's boring..." I almost didn't hit send! And the funny thing... I didn't even know she accepted the submission! 

Then today (Dec. 2), I received an email saying it was live and WAHOO! Totally flipped out.

Tights and Etiquette? Wait. "What do tights have to do with etiquette?" One might ask. It's a valid question. And the answer is simple: style is etiquette. So is how we care for our things (yes, including something as seemingly simple as tights). The less we have to think about the cares of this world, the more we can concentrate on the most important things like how we treat one another. 

And let me tell you, if my tights are bunching down my hips, it's hard to genuinely smile while greeting my potential new business partner's new husband.

So check out "How to Make tights last: Freeze them first" by Aly Walansky. Learn a few tricks to keep your tights in tip top shape

and learn about this nifty trick for retired tights and panty hose. 

And the next time you hesitate because you or your work is not "good enough" think of me and Aly Walansky and though it may be scary, put yourself out there. It's worth the risk. 

Signing off,

Carrie Glenn, Etiquette Expert
Please remember to Practice Politeness!

Never miss a blog! Click below

Carrie Glenn helps Millennials develop career etiquette so that they can become a powerful force in the workplace. She teaches workplace civility, career etiquette, volunteer and event etiquette, Mother / Daughter grace and poise, professional dining, professional image and makeup, and more. From the dining room to the boardroom, her unique training provides powerful social skills that deliver results. She is the founder of, where she teaches everything kind, classy, and beautiful and she is the author of The Periscope Checklist, the eBook that teaches professional, high quality live broadcasting skills.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The Think Big Revolution Keynote with Michael Port or Who Do You Think You Are by Carrie Glenn

Never have I posted someone else's video in my blogs. Here's the thing. In business etiquette, we talk about networking. We talk about connecting with others. We talk about promoting others and how to promote ourselves at the same time. That doesn't mean we arbitrarily go around posting great works from others. There's too many to choose from.

But this time I couldn't help it.

Watching this video made me feel. Made me crave something. Made me determined to continue building the community of amazing and unique people who want to make a difference in the world. And it made me think about all those missed opportunities due to that voice in my head that asks on a daily and sometimes hourly basis,

"Who do you think you are?"

Who do you think you are to believe that you can have more of life than what you've been offered? Who do you think you are to believe that you can make an impact in this world? Who do you think you are to follow your unrealistic dreams? Who? Who? Who...

Michael Port spoke of love, "You know the whole, whole room feels different now. Like we can do anything... That's love. Actually. It's all around us. That's big! See, that's what I'm talking about when I say 'Revolutionary'!" I couldn't help being moved.

And love really is revolutionary! Love is what makes Etiquette at Hand so important. We all know manners are important. Some of us practice them more often or more seriously, or even better than others. And some think we "got" it when in fact, we don't. Not really. Because though it does matter that we use proper etiquette for the proper situations, what really matters is the etiquette for how we treat each other; love each other.

Etiquette is love.

My definition of etiquette is, "the consistent display of courtesy to all people at all times" and that, my dear friends, is love.

See, here's the thing. When we make the decision, the commitment, that no matter how rude people are to us, we will respond with politeness; no matter how rushed we are, we will take the time to show patience; no matter how angry we are, we will respond in a civil and courteous manner; then we are acting in love. We are creating a safe environment in which we and others can explore and fail and thrive. Together. And in this process, we are creating love.

Who do I think I am? I am Carrie Glenn, the Etiquette Expert that stands up for love and kindness and equality.

So who do you think you are? Comment below to share who you are and what you stand for.

Signing off,

Carrie Glenn, the Etiquette Expert
Please remember to Practice Politeness!

Never miss a blog! Click below

Carrie Glenn is the founder of Etiquette at Hand. She helps entrepreneurs develop their professional edge so that they can take command of the room, negotiate like a pro and network with those around them in any situation. She is an expert speaker and coach in business and career etiquette, effective communication and powerful presentation. From the boardroom to the dining room to the bedroom, her unique training provides powerful social skills that deliver results.
Through her services as a key note speaker and author, seminars, training programs, one-on-one coaching and online mentorship programs and products, she is delighted to empower clients to learn how to confidently reach their career and relationship goals.

Monday, February 16, 2015

How to Properly Date Women by Carrie Glenn

How to Properly Date Women by Carrie Glenn

Flowers...check. Card...check. Reservations...check...I know, I know. Valentine's Day is over. For many, it was wonderful and for others...well... Not so much. Many of us experience #datingfail to some degree. Check out these dating tips and allow me to give you the top ten dating etiquette tips to help facilitate the success of your next date night plans. Whether it's your first date, your fiftieth, or perhaps it is the day you plan to propose, following these tips gives your lover the chance to relax and see you at your best.
Give her direct compliments and skip the critiques. It's date night! Criticizing your date (even jokingly) is like bringing a third wheel to the table. It is rude and unnecessary. Instead, give her direct compliments, starting with a great compliment the moment you see her. A direct compliment is one that emphasizes the word "you," e.g., "You look lovely," or "You're so funny!"
Use direct eye contact and good posture to demonstrate your attentiveness. This may seem like a no-brainer yet check out the couples next time you are out and about. Watch how often they don't look at each other or turn their bodies away to hunch over their phones. Sit up! Shoulders relaxed and squared. Lean towards her. Watch her move. Watch her push back her hair. Watch her lips move as she talks. Look into her eyes.
Open the car door for her! Yes! She can open her own door. She is strong and self-reliant. Opening her door in no way demeans the woman's journey to equality. It is just good etiquette. It doesn't matter how long you've been dating or even married, opening the car door for your lady reminds you both on a pretty constant basis that there are basic guidelines in manners that we follow to demonstrate civility and courtesy. And of course this goes for all doors such as the house door and the door to the restaurant.
Prepare for the journey. How you travel says a lot about you. Showing her you put some thought into the mundane aspects of the date tells her that you care about her wellbeing. If you are going in your vehicle, have it cleaned. If you are using public transportation, be sure to plan your routes, have fare readily on hand, and be a gentleman to all travelers (and do please keep your knees together while seated). If you are on foot, walk on the curbside of the sidewalk. Hold her hand or allow her to take your arm yet refrain from taking hers or grasping her elbow (it feels awkward and uncomfortable).
Give yourself the Wow Factor. Experts agree that it takes less than 30 seconds for someone to sum you up. Your head, hands and feet are the top three attention grabbers so wear a great hairstyle and/or hat and a sincere smile. Clean and file your nails (really, this is non-negotiable) and moisturize your hands. Make sure your shoes are well maintained and polished. She may not think to comment on these aspects yet she will surely appreciate them. Show up with a small token of your affection in your hand and the most fabulous smile on your face.
Demonstrate grace under fire. All the little things that can go wrong on a date can add up quickly. Slow traffic. A fender-bender. Your reservation is lost. The train is late. The couple next to you thought it would be lovely to allow their new bundle of joy to exuberantly exercise his lungs throughout dinner. How you handle conflict will either be a turn on or a turn off. Remember, it's date night so have fun and be easy-going! (That said, wouldn't it be just as lovely to hand the aforementioned couple your dinner bill on your way out? One can fantasize...)
Ask her for a favor. Which came first, the chicken or the egg? It seems natural to assume that when we like someone, we are happy to do nice things for him or be nicer to him. However, studies show that when we do something for someone, we grow to like him more. So give her an opportunity to like you more by asking for her help. Any favor will do. You could ask her to help you pick out a tie (a great way to secure a future date). Be prepared to reciprocate!
Loyalty is key so have her back. And the scene goes like this: The laughing couple talk enthusiastically. They casually brush fingers, their eyes smoldering with desire... She brings up the latest office gossip and complains about a co-worker. He tries to make her feel better by underplaying said co-workers evil plot to destroy her. Her back goes up and she slips her hand from his, sliding it into her lap. How could he defend the one person who might crush her promotion dreams? Maybe he's not the one... I see this all the time with couples and even between friends. Here's the thing, trying to minimize a woman's worries only serves to put into question her ability to perceive and translate events. Also, unless a woman asks for advice, she doesn't want it. If you really want to help this uncomfortable moment pass quickly, simply listen and acknowledge her struggle. Save the strategic planning session for a non-date night.
Remember your date night theme at all times. Are you planning to propose? Are you celebrating falling in love or an anniversary? Are you simply excited for the excuse to get out of the house? Begin with the end in mind. Whatever your plans, remember them! Don't allow circumstance to rob you of your fun. Be pleasant, let conflict fizzle, honor your relationship.

Practice good table manners. Remember BMW: your bread is on the left, your meal is in the middle and your wine, water or other beverage is on the right. Pull out her chair for her unless the wait staff does it. Follow her cue on when to place the napkin in your lap, take the first drink, and take the first bite of the meal. It's very unattractive to still be settling into our seats while our date starts wolfing down the bread or worse yet, dinner. During the toast, look her in the eyes up until you tip your head back to sip your beverage. Break off one bite of bread at a time, butter and eat it. Be courteous to all wait staff. Eat your meal in time with hers (not too fast so she has to finish alone awkward! and not too slow so that she feels as though she ate too fast). Tip well.
"If we all practiced manners and civility, what would we then have left to war over?" ~Carrie Glenn
Thank you for visiting my blog and have a fabulous day
Signing off...
Carrie Glenn helps people learn to consistently practice manners so that they can get more of the things they want. She is an expert speaker and coach in workplace civility, career etiquette, and effective communication. From the dining room to the boardroom, her unique training provides powerful social skills that deliver results. She is the founder of Etiquette at Hand, where she teaches everything kind, classy, and beautiful. Carrie Glenn is delighted to empower clients to learn how to take command of the room, enhance their relationships, and confidently reach their career and relationship goals. To learn more about her visit

Monday, September 22, 2014

Top Ten Tips for Network Marketers, Entrepreneurs, and Other Sales Professionals

How to enter a room. Pause a moment. Smile. Walk with Confidence. Be Present.
  1. Make Your Entrance Count: When you enter a room, stop and pause a moment. This instantly positions you as a confident and important addition to the event or group. Use good eye contact and be present. Always look people in the eye when you are talking to them, introducing yourself, etc., and put your mind and attention fully on them. Make sure you walk with confidence. Women, pull up gently in your lower abdomen as if you are trying to zip up a tight pair of jeans and place one foot in front of the other allowing your hips to slightly sway. Men, walk with ease and with your feet moving directly forward. Women and men: Chin horizontal to the earth; if it's too high, you appear arrogant, too low and you appear unconfident and weak. Stand straight and with your shoulders back all the while with an air of grace and ease. This takes practice.
  2. Practice the RULES of Engagement: Know when and when not to join a group. If you approach a group and they turn slightly towards you, wait for an appropriate moment to join in the conversation. If they don't turn towards you, move on to another group. (NOTE: remember to avoid taking it personally when others do not include you; at the same time, remember to always turn to include others. It is very rude otherwise!) When introducing others, always say the highest ranking person's name first. I.e. (you are introducing your newest business partner, Lisa Nichols to your NVP, Hilary Corcoran): "Hilary, I would like to introduce you to our newest team member, Lisa Nichols. Lisa, this is Hilary Corcoran, our NVP." (to Hilary) "Lisa is also from Ireland and very excited to join our team." Keep in mind that a client outranks anyone in the company. I.e. (you are introducing Trish Samuel, your favorite client to Hilary): Trish, I'd like you to meet Hilary Corcoran, CEO of Hope Nation, our Arbonne branch. Hilary, this is Trish Samuel, my very good friend and favorite client." (to Trish) "Hilary lives near your daughter in Newport Beach..." This goes for guests and hosts. The guest always outranks the host. Lastly, give a firm handshake. Clasp the hand and step forward with your right foot. Shake the hand three to four times and release, maintaining eye contact and a bright smile the whole time.
  3. Honor the Art of Small Talk: Small talk is the most socially accepted ice-breaker. Ask a lot of questions. Listen well. Stick to neutral subjects. Have fun. Stay up to date on a few interesting bits of current events. Be sure you have a few fun facts and even historical bits or a few quotes memorized. Know your audience. If you are at an event with non-social media types, don't ask them if they saw the latest Tweet from Byoncé. If you are in a room of tweens, don't play the jitterbug and start dancing.
  4. Polish Your Professional Presence: What is your story and whom do you admire? Decide what your dream is and then dress yourself in that dream. In other words, what do you look like when you are at your best or have made it to the top? Are there others that you admire from whom you can glean image tips? What to you want to communicate to others? In other words, when you walk down the street, what do you want others to see in you: chic? elegant? warm and friendly? modern? romantic? business-like? When it's time to shop, always seek quality over quantity. It is best to pick one quality suit and a couple of blouses rather than several outfits of lesser quality.
  5. First Impressions Count so Make Yours Last: As a primal instinct, everyone you meet will decide in less than 5 seconds if they trust and like you or if you are a threat. The first three things people notice about you are your head, hands and feet. Keep your hair styled at all times, nails neat and manicured, and shoes freshly polished and free from scratches and dings. And yes, men! Manicures are available for you, not just women. You do not have to polish of course (unless you want to), however please keep those cuticles in excellent shape since you will use your hands to shake others' hands and handle product. Your single greatest asset is your smile.
    Your smile comes from your heart.
    A smile must come from your heart, reach your eyes, then your lips. Eye contact is crucial when you smile at someone.
  6. Style is Your Personal Signature: Remember that your wardrobe and accessories are valuable tools you can use to brand yourself. Your personal space and vehicle are also branding tools. Keep these items clean and polished, neat and tidy, fresh and enjoyable. Your signature is up to you, just make sure to keep it consistent and in pristine condition.
  7. Follow the Golden Rule of Networking: When you attend events, look for one maybe two (max!) lifetime connections. Look for someone you really like and would love to invite to your home for Christmas dinner. Seek like-minded people. These people may have vast differences from which you can draw on to enhance each others' lives, yet you must be able to resonate with their core values. Following this rule opens your mind and heart to true and valuable connections. You may end up occasionally connecting with more than one or two or you may go home with just one. Either way, you will feel happy because this connection will in all likelihood end up a lifetime friend.
  8. How to Give and Receive Business Cards: Always use two hands when you hand someone your card. Hold it by the two top corners and present it as if it is your dearest possession. Receive their card with the same honor and respect. Comment on and/or compliment it. And remember the #1, most important, business card tip ever: It is far more important to receive a card than give one. Always ask for others' cards before you ask them if you can give them yours and always ask for others' cards even if you don't have cards.
  9. Give to Receive: We care. That is obvious. Why we care is not always obvious. When we want others to perceive that we truly care about them, we must approach them with the attitude of serving them rather than wanting anything from them. This includes our hosts, potential business builders, and our team. Most of us have heard the phrase, "Ask and ye shall receive," and while this is true, there is also another system at play in today's society. It is, "Give and ye shall receive." Fortune 500 companies such as Merrill Lynch, built their fortunes on the concept of giving before asking. In fact, Arbonne subscribes to this philosophy by teaching us to give samples and spa nights, etc., before ever asking clients to buy. Be prepared and satisfied to give, give, and give some more without ever receiving a sale, a partner, or anything in return. Schedule time each day or at the very least, each week to hand write thank you cards and other types of "giving" communications with your contacts. 
  10. Learn and Practice Dining Etiquette Skills: Know your basics. For instance, it's okay to remove a bone or grizzle from your mouth as long as you remove it the same way you placed it in. I.e. if you used your fingers, remove with fingers. If you used a fork, remove with your fork. Place the unwanted food on your plate without trying to cover it up. Simply set it down and leave it be. Another basic: when eating your bread, break off one small bite at at time, butter it and then eat. Repeat as desired. Don't just butter the whole thing and then take bites off of the whole piece of bread. And refrain from pushing away your plate when you are finished. Don't touch it at all. Let the waiter clear it (or if you are clearing, get up and then clear the plates).
    American Dining. Informal Dinner. How to set the table. BMW.
    Understand the place setting by remembering BMW. Think Bread on the left, your Meal or plate, in the middle and Water or Wine on the right. (I know, I know. Mercedes isn't too thrilled with this acronym...). Master what to do during the meal. The key here is to know that mistakes happen and your job is to make as little fuss when they do happen and move forward quickly. Also, help others feel comfortable if they spill or make a mistake. And of course, take a dining etiquette course! and practice often at home.
What to remember: 
  • Give yourself room to learn and make mistakes
  • Practice often (you are welcome to join my ongoing training by clicking this LINK)
  • Avoid giving unsolicited etiquette advice to anyone. EVER.
What to do first: 
  • Write out any due or overdue thank you notes.
  • Send an email to someone you recently met. Include a link that they would find interesting or helpful (i.e. if they like golf, send them a link to a great golf article)
  • Watch this VIDEO on how to give and receive business cards and then practice with a friend or colleague 
"Learning how to accept business cards has made all the difference in how other's perceive me. Thank you!" -Yvonne Hildebrand-Bowen

Feel free to download this Original Photo 1-sheet as my gift to you! If you like it, you may purchase the accompanying 13 page Ebook featuring each strategy on an original photo for only $4.97. This is a simple and elegant PDF style Ebook, sure to please.

"If we all practiced manners and civility, what would we then have left to war over?" ~Carrie Glenn

~Signing off...

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Empathy Exercise, Change Your Mind by Carrie Glenn, founder of Etiquette at Hand

Me. Annoyed.
Okay. So I'm sitting here trying to write these tips and exercises. My fireplace is inoperable because a seagull family has built a nest to house its egg in my chimney and our laws prohibit moving a wild bird egg. It's summer. Everywhere. Except...Pacific Grove, Fogtown, USA. I've been cold every night for about a week and guess what? My thermostat is broken as well. So I cannot even turn on the heater. 
The service man is here fixing it. Rejoice! Right? No. I am annoyed. The service man has told me about matching wiring in a thermostat. He told me yesterday while he was assessing the problem. He told me yesterday while going down to the basement to check the wiring, while packing up, while explaining how he would talk to the leasing company, while announcing that he was sure the problem was that the thermostat was broken because the wiring is okay, while he was backing out the door.
He tells me again today while he is pulling off the old thermostat. He tells me today while he is opening the new package, while he is installing the new thermostat, while he is handing me the recyclables (yes, I care deeply about our Earth, however not about the wiring...I just want to work on this article...and feel warm), while he is showing me how the thermostat works, while he is...

Just make it stop! I am so annoyed I can hardly practice the Self-regulation it is taking to politely exit this would-be-heat-hero from my home.
And it hits me. I want to slam the door in a man's face so that I can finish teaching Etiquette. He is standing there, so proud of his work; so proud of his findings, his discoveries. I realize that the extra maybe, eight minutes of my life I spent listening to his wire story is not, in fact, wasted time I can never get back. Each moment was a chance to connect. To listen and to understand. And I blew all but the first and last.
The first time he told me, I listened intently, truly interested (well, at least a little bit interested). The interest faded quickly into annoyance. Now I realize my wasted opportunity and I listen again for the last time. The information is not new. But my understanding is. Would-be-heat-hero has become a person with a need to be heard. Over and over and over and over and over and over again. Right or wrong, annoying or not, my job, my task is change my mind about how I feel about him. Though I didn't get to this conclusion until it was almost too late, the fact that I have will make all the difference.
Tonight, unlike last night, I will not have to rely on Self-regulation to keep from complaining to my boyfriend that the Would-be-heat-hero talked a lot. (Actually, last night I only practiced Self-regulation after I had complained twice...) I won't complain in my own heart and mind that the Would-be-heat-hero talked a lot. I won't be glad to see this human disappear from my existence.
I will celebrate Would-be-heat-hero. I will care that he is well and happy and thriving in his business. He did a good job. He was well informed, reasonably fast and honest. That's what I will remember and repeat. 
And all because I changed my mind. Yesterday, I chose to be annoyed. Today, I choose to be kind. And it's 71 degrees in here!
Good Manners and Happy!
Thank you for visiting my blog and have a fabulous day!

~Signing off...

"If we all practiced manners and civility, what would we then have left to war over?" ~Carrie Glenn
Visit my site by clicking below and sign up for expert etiquette advice!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Etiquette: How to Set the Table

How to Set Your Thanksgiving Table

The smell of cinnamon and apple cider lingers in the air. The sounds of chattering, children laughing and car horns are ever present and never ending. In every direction, there are sightings of sale signs and holiday decorations. Everywhere we venture we can taste samples of sweet and savory goods. And velvet! The luxurious feel of velvet and silk has arrived.

These changes herald the joy, peace and love we hold in our thankful hearts and share with others this time of year. They herald gatherings with loved ones and dinners and parties. As for hosting, may those who do so be especially blessed!

Hosting is a joy and a challenge. There is so much that must be done and so little time to do it and then it's over. To make things just a little easier, keep in mind these tips as you prepare your Thanksgiving feast this year. 

Step 1: Decide your theme and choose your décor. Your theme is simple enough as it is likely to be inspired by the holiday. Some hosts and hostesses like to layer in helping others by having guests bring something for a local toy drive or other charity. 

Step 2: When choosing your décor keep in mind your tastes and resources. Do you want to be elaborate or simple?  Ashley or picnic table? Fine china or paper plates? Whether you set an elaborate table cover or throw together a couple of card tables, the real magic of Thanksgiving Dinner is putting together folks of all sorts, tied by the common threads of family, friendship or cordiality. 

Step 3: Always use a tablecloth for your Thanksgiving table. It sets the standard that something very special is about to happen. Plus, the tablecloth is useful because it hides a multitude of sins including scratches, burns, water marks and the crack between two tables shoved together. White is the color that indicates a very formal affair, however, today's modern world likes to personalize and mix things up. 

Step 4: Strategize your table setting by the number of courses you are serving and when you are serving them. Many people serve Thanksgiving as a two meal course. They lay the entire meal on the table and then offer dessert and coffee when the dinner has been cleared. In this case you will set a plate, napkin, one dinner fork, one dinner knife and perhaps a spoon. Others serve the meal in several courses. In this case you will number your forks, knives and spoon to how many courses you're having. Remember to keep your dishes, napkins and silverware an inch from the edge of the table. This looks good and helps to keep these articles from slipping off. 

Step 5: Setting the table. Stand in front of each place setting as you go. Set the plate or charger in the center of each place. Lay the napkin on top of each plate. Forks go to the left, knives (blades facing the plate) and spoons to the right. You may place the dessert fork and spoon above the plate (fork times pointing right and spoon bowl pointing left) or you may bring them to the table with the dessert at the end of the meal. The charger is only a place holder. If you use one, it is removed when the plate of food arrives.

Think BMW. Your bread plate will go to the left, just above the forks. Your plate for your main meal goes in the center. Your water and wine glasses will go to the right above the knives and spoon.

Place the water goblet above the knife that is closest to the plate. Red wine glass goes to the right of that and white wine glass to the right of that. If you are having champagne, the flute fits just above the water goblet and red wine glass. 

Step 6: Finishing touches. No matter how you set your table, it's the little finishing touches that make all the difference. You may get fancy with individual salt and pepper shakers or bowls. Shakers go on the left and above the bread plate. Salt bowls are placed between each pair of guests. A centerpiece is always nice, keeping in mind that it and any floral arrangements should be kept short so that people can see across the table. Candlesticks are a great idea. Name holders may be used and can be placed above the plate in the plate or in many varieties. A lovely typed or handwritten menu is also a very nice touch and, if added, can be placed on top of the napkin which is on top of your plate or charger. 

A good host or hostess always keeps in mind several things. The comfort of your guests is the most important thing. Lively conversation is mandatory. Mishaps happen. Be prepared for them, be gracious when they happen, and move quickly passed them. Take into consideration your resources. If you only have one size wineglass, just set one. It's all about the experience, not the props. Use what you have. Use it well. And most importantly, have fun. 

To download my holiday dining guide as a gift from me, go to my website 

Friday, November 22, 2013

Avoid Family Fist Fight Follies!

Thanksgiving Countdown 6 days...

Start practicing silence now. When anyone annoys, irritates, angers or disappoints you, resist snapping or flying off the handle. Give yourself a moment of silence and allow dignity in. 

This also works mid-tantrum! If you find yourself reacting and in the moment think of me (what?! good job!), act on silence right then. It's all good and it takes practice and effort. Like a muscle, the more you use etiquette, the better you get at it. Someday you'll be a pro. 

Or, like me, it may take years 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

30 Day Thankful Challenge: Day 3

Thankful challenge. What a lovely and civil idea. Ah November, with its nippy air, darker days, crackling fireplaces, the smell of cinnamon, family time and holiday soirées. It's that time of year when we start thinking about shopping and cooking and baking and loved ones and being thankful. It's also that time of year when we are rushed, stressed, and dealing with all sorts of difficult schedules, situations and even people. This perfectly timed challenge thus carries the honor of providing us a new tradition which adds a mere moment of retrospect, meditation and appreciation to our frazzled and ever-growing daily to do list. 

Perhaps then it's my duty, nay, it's my privilege to jump on this 30 day thankful trend. Today is day three and yes, I have completed days one and two. The funny thing is, today when I awoke I tried to think of something specific for which I was thankful.  

Granted, the cobwebs of sleep had not yet lifted their sticky tentacles from my worn and worried brain. Though I immediately felt guilty that I couldn't think of just the right subject for my "thanks" straight away, I immediately felt thankful for this challenge because it enabled me to start going over in my mind all the things I'm thankful for. You needn't worry. That's not what I'm thankful for today. I'm not that cliché! I have listed my first three days of "thanks" below. Happy reading!

Day 3: I am thankful knowing that my Mommy would be proud of me. She would totally dig my new career, marketing plan, and entrepreneurial spirit. She would even approve of all the investment risk. In fact, if she were with us today, she would be doing EXACTLY what I'm doing. Maybe a different subject, maybe her own spin, but she would so LOVE this brand-new (to me!) entrepreneurial platform. It's just right up her alley.

My Ma's graduation photo 1965

She would tell me, "Go for it Carrie. Live your dreams. Don't stop. Don't have a backup plan. You got this, girl."

And as fear, worry, absolute stricken terror, and EMANATE DISASTER approached, she would gently brush it all aside, insisting it would all work out. 



Day 2: I'm thankful for really great friends!!!

Photo by Dana Davis

Day 3: I am so thankful that I get to do work that serves others, inspires kindness and beauty, and is almost ALWAYS so much fun that even after several hours and working into the doesn't seem like work. Thank you, Jesus!!!"

Why Etiquette and Manners are so important

There are so many joys to be grateful for. I hope I have inspired you to think about your own life and how marvelous and rich with miracles it is.

Thank you for reading and have a fabulous day. 

Carrie Glenn